The final game of the preseason against Baltimore Ravens is more than a walk through for the Falcons. They have many unanswered question and many starting positions to fill including running back, three spots on the offensive line, a backup QB and starting tight end.
Tickets for tonight’s game are still available so be sure to get yours today and help cheer on your Atlanta Falcons.
The defense of Baltimore reared its head Sunday as Matt Ryan and the Atlanta Falcons were smothered by the Raven’s D. Ryan was sacked five times for a loss of 42 yards.
“I think they’ve got a big menu in terms of what they do defensively,” Ryan said. “I thought we were on top of schematically what they wanted to do. Our issue came down to execution. I thought they out-executed us. They played better than we did.”
The Falcons got back to work this week preparing for the Detroit Lions who are coming off a 24-23 victory over the New Orleans Saints. The game will take place in Wembley Stadium, in London, U.K. at 9:30 A.M. Eastern time. The game is sold out.
The NFL Network hype wagon pulls into Atlanta, and not a moment too soon. If any teams deserve the spotlight to themselves and some extra ink, it’s these two. The Falcons and the Ravens have everything a fan could ask for: winning records, electrifying offensive stars like Roddy White and Ray Rice, still-productive probable Hall of Famers like Ray Lewis and Tony Gonzalez, solid rosters, creative and capable coaches. Quarterbacks Matt Ryan and Joe Flacco, meeting for the first time, emphasize substance over style: they have developed steadily since their selections in the first round of the 2008 draft, winning games by playing within their systems, taking what the defense gives them.
What these teams lack is that reality television, ”Behind the Music,” overdramatized sizzle that makes teams like the Cowboys and the Vikings so compelling. After a week of Wade watching, we need a little more tackling and a lot less intrigue. Pick: Falcons. MIKE TANIER
GRAPHICS: Baltimore Ravens (6-2) at Atlanta Falcons (6-2) 8 p.m., NFL Network Line: Falcons by 1